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@Work: Starfish Gourmet & Wines

Nov. 26, 2007 — St. John's food selection went up quite a few notches when Starfish Gourmet & Wines opened in early November at a prime location across from Starfish Market in the Marketplace shopping center.
"Look at this porcini swimming in olive oil," manager Paul Tsakeres said, showing off a bottle filled with tasty mushrooms.
And that's just the tip of the shopping list.
Caviar in a multitude of flavors and origins — Israel, Russia and France — sit side-by-side in a refrigerator case with buckwheat blini to make a delightful appetizer.
Then there are the truffles, frozen gourmet appetizers, organic peanut butter, European honey, scone mixes, spices, Kitchen Basic stock, and much, much more filling the shelves.
Sparkling lemonade, Chinese health drinks, pomegranate juice, microbrew beers, and others are included in the beverage selection.
While the gourmet foods and drinks are tempting, the store shines most when it comes to its wine and cheese selection.
"This Moreer cheese is a beautiful cheddar," Tsakeres said.
The case are filled with types of cheese probably new to many St. John residents used to buying huge chunks of more pedestrian cheddar at St. Thomas warehouse stores.
"We're always getting new things in," Tsakeres.
He's most proud of the wine selection that consumes a good part of the store.
"We've increased our wine selection to a spectacular level with great depth and breadth," he said.
The wine selection runs from an opening $4-a-bottle-special on Funky Lama wines from Argentina, which Tsakeres said was flying off the shelves and would normally sell for $10 a bottle, to selection of very high end wines that topped out at $1,700 a bottle.
He said the expensive wines like Heitz Martha's Vineyard at $250 a bottle as well as wines from Chateau Latour, Chateau Mouton Rothschild and Chateau Lafite Rothschild are selling.
Tsakeres said so far the store is doing well. He said that specialty markets like Starfish Gourmet & Wine are the hot ticket on the mainland.
And he said that chefs who cater to the island's upscale vacation villa market are finding what they need at the store.
Tsakeres said the store, owned by Starfish Market scion David Mugar, grew out of the much smaller wine and gourmet cheese selection at Starfish Market.
The Boston-born Tsakeres, 52, moved to St. John more than a year ago from Nantucket after spending decades working in the food service industry in the Northeast.
He graduated from Suffolk University with a master's degree in counselor education and was setting up a life coaching business on St. John when the opportunity to manage Starfish Gourmet & Wine beckoned. "I was in the right place at the right time," he said.
Starfish Gourmet & Wine is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Call 715-3663.
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Nov. 26, 2007 -- St. John's food selection went up quite a few notches when Starfish Gourmet & Wines opened in early November at a prime location across from Starfish Market in the Marketplace shopping center.
"Look at this porcini swimming in olive oil," manager Paul Tsakeres said, showing off a bottle filled with tasty mushrooms.
And that's just the tip of the shopping list.
Caviar in a multitude of flavors and origins -- Israel, Russia and France -- sit side-by-side in a refrigerator case with buckwheat blini to make a delightful appetizer.
Then there are the truffles, frozen gourmet appetizers, organic peanut butter, European honey, scone mixes, spices, Kitchen Basic stock, and much, much more filling the shelves.
Sparkling lemonade, Chinese health drinks, pomegranate juice, microbrew beers, and others are included in the beverage selection.
While the gourmet foods and drinks are tempting, the store shines most when it comes to its wine and cheese selection.
"This Moreer cheese is a beautiful cheddar," Tsakeres said.
The case are filled with types of cheese probably new to many St. John residents used to buying huge chunks of more pedestrian cheddar at St. Thomas warehouse stores.
"We're always getting new things in," Tsakeres.
He's most proud of the wine selection that consumes a good part of the store.
"We've increased our wine selection to a spectacular level with great depth and breadth," he said.
The wine selection runs from an opening $4-a-bottle-special on Funky Lama wines from Argentina, which Tsakeres said was flying off the shelves and would normally sell for $10 a bottle, to selection of very high end wines that topped out at $1,700 a bottle.
He said the expensive wines like Heitz Martha's Vineyard at $250 a bottle as well as wines from Chateau Latour, Chateau Mouton Rothschild and Chateau Lafite Rothschild are selling.
Tsakeres said so far the store is doing well. He said that specialty markets like Starfish Gourmet & Wine are the hot ticket on the mainland.
And he said that chefs who cater to the island's upscale vacation villa market are finding what they need at the store.
Tsakeres said the store, owned by Starfish Market scion David Mugar, grew out of the much smaller wine and gourmet cheese selection at Starfish Market.
The Boston-born Tsakeres, 52, moved to St. John more than a year ago from Nantucket after spending decades working in the food service industry in the Northeast.
He graduated from Suffolk University with a master's degree in counselor education and was setting up a life coaching business on St. John when the opportunity to manage Starfish Gourmet & Wine beckoned. "I was in the right place at the right time," he said.
Starfish Gourmet & Wine is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Call 715-3663.
Back Talk


Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.